Hamilton Grange, Alexander Hamilton's farmhouse from 1802 until he was killed by Aaron Burr in an 1804 duel, is about to move. Or not. You see, this is one of those complicated New York real estate stories.
Hamilton, perhaps Columbia University's (then King's College) most important graduate, co-author of the Federalist Papers, founder of the Bank of New York, first Secretary of the Treasury, all-around hot-head, and scandalous adulterer, had this federal style house built on his 32-acre estate. In 1889 the house was bought by St. Luke's Episcopal Church and moved two blocks to its present location. As you can see it is hemmed in by the church on the right and an apartment building on the left. The original entranceway and wraparound porch were removed.
In 1962, the National Park Service became the owner of the house. In the early 1990s a plan was put in place to move the house down the block into St. Nicholas Park. After many years funding was allocated and the house's new foundation is being prepared in the park.
Here's the catch. The original orientation of the house was to have the front face southwest. Were the grange to face southwest in the park the front entrance would be staring at the side of a cliff and the back of a City College building. The Park Service decided to rotate the house so the front points northeast, toward 141st St.
The reorientation has some historic preservationists upset. Last week the local Community Board voted to oppose the move. I'm not sure how much sway that decision has with the city and National Park Service.